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'Click and Collect' online service for used cars brings a new competitive dimension to the used car market...

'Click and Collect' online service for used cars brings a new competitive dimension to the used car market... February 19, 2015 by Ian Wright

Pendragon, the UK’s largest auto dealer, has announced that it has launched a programme which will allow customers to choose from their countrywide stock of 20,000 used cars and have them delivered to a local outlet, anywhere in the country.
Branded as ‘Move Me Closer’, the new service aims to propel Pendragon to greater domination of the used car market by offering the ultimate in customer convenience.
Pendragon sells about 150,000 used cars a year representing about 40pc of its revenue.
But Chief Executive Trevor Finn believes the business can use its size to dominate the market and boost this figure through the online offering.
“Our used-car sales represent about 2pc of the UK used market.
But we have about 20,000 used cars on our books so we’ve probably got the car someone wants.
Customers can go online and look through our stock and we will bring the car they want to them. Even if they don’t buy the car we will have built a level of trust with them and they might well buy another car from us.”

Traditionalists will spot the potential pitfalls, of course.
Delivery costs and trade-in valuations come to mind, but it would be foolish to ignore the underlying premise that successive generations of consumers are increasingly confident in using the internet for major purchases without fear of poor products or services.
A refundable reservation fee applies to the service and Pendragon say that a pilot scheme has been running for almost two years, convincing them of its viability.
The group has dealerships across the country and feels that the combination of ‘bricks and clicks’
will enable it to shift used cars more quickly, reducing the need to lower prices on stock that has been standing for a while.
Interesting as well, that Pendragon report that 40% of their profits come from used cars and that they believe the UK new car market has now peaked. So further growth to come from used cars and aftersales.
And even for those franchises that don’t have the level of coverage that Pendragon do, this is a concept worthy of serious consideration.

 

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